5 Different Routes into Nursing: Which One is Right for You and Your Goals?

Debra Riley


Hey future lifesavers, considering diving into the noble world of nursing? You’re in luck! Navigating this career maze can be as tangled as your earbuds after a jog, but fear not.

Choosing your path into nursing is like selecting your favorite ice cream flavor – tons of options and no wrong answers.

Each route’s got its own vibes and requirements tailored to your goals.

Ready for the lowdown?

Let’s roll!

routes into nursing

Diploma in Nursing: Old-School Cool

Buckle up, friends. Let’s rewind to the classic era with a traditional spin on nursing education – the Diploma in Nursing. This is like the vinyl record of nursing pathways; it’s got history and has been around since Florence Nightingale was calling the shots.

So what’s the deal? Well, these programs usually park themselves in hospitals, giving you a backstage pass to real-world healthcare hustle from day one. You’re looking at about three years of hitting the books (and the wards) before you can strut as a paid Registered Nurse (RN), earning over $81k annually on average.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing: The Full Monty

Alright, strap in, because the next stop on our nursing express is the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) – the primo deluxe edition of nursing pathways that can advance your career significantly. This is for those who want to go whole hog and aren’t afraid of a little extra grind.

Launching yourself into a BSN means you’re signing up for around four years at a university or college.

It’s like doing the full marathon instead of the sprint – more endurance but loads more street cred in the nursing world.

Taking an Associate’s Degree in Nursing: The Speedy Shortcut

Alright, shift gears, and let’s chat about snagging an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN) – the quick and nifty route on the nursing track.

Clocking in at roughly 2 years, this path is solid for anyone itching to slap on those scrubs without wading through a sea of electives.

Say you stumble upon a sweet nursing program in Orlando or any vibrant city for that matter.

They’ll arm you with core skills pronto so that you can dive into the deep end of healthcare swiftly – like getting dropped into clinical rotations almost out of the gate!

nursing sign

Licensed Practical Nursing: The Agile Pivot

Hang on to your hats, ’cause now we’re gonna pivot to the role of Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). This isn’t just any old hopscotch square in the game – it’s for those ready to leap into healthcare with catlike agility.

Enrolling in an LPN program is like pressing fast-forward; these courses typically last about a year and are offered at community colleges or trade schools.

Opting for an LPN means mastering the fundamentals – administering meds, patient hygiene, vital signs – that kind of jazz. Plus, it’s easy on the wallet and doesn’t eat up years of life studying before you don those scrubs for real.

Accelerated Paths: Zero to Hero RN

Strap in, speed demons – this one’s for those who wanna blast from zero to hero, RN style. Enter the world of accelerated nursing programs, where your previous non-nursing degree turns into a launch pad for entering the healthcare stratosphere at warp speed.

We’re talking about intense, heart-racing courses designed for career changers who’ve already got a bachelor’s degree in another field and are craving that nurse life something fierce.

These condensed programs squeeze typically four years of learning into about 12-18 months of pure adrenaline-fueled education.

It’s an intense experience, for sure, but one with its benefits for certain people.

a qualified nurse

Final Thoughts

Diving into nursing is no small feat, folks! From the hands-on hustle of diplomas to the whirlwind accelerated paths, there’s a route for every kind of trailblazer out there.

Catch your breath, choose your path wisely, and get ready to make some waves in those healthcare halls.